University of Bath: Audio Visual Unit

News and developments in AV

Audience Response System (Voting / Clickers)

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📥  Equipment, Systems

We've been undertaking some development over the last few weeks and months to update the old version of the software for Turningpoint.

The good news is that you should be able to get anyone with a mobile device or laptop to participate in the sessions. You will not need the clickers!

The clickers will still work - but you won't necessarily need them any more.

As an academic member of staff you get a license of 500 concurrent student users at the same time.....

The slight change is that you will need to have a license to use the system attached to your account, but we will be using SSO (your own login at the University) to do it.
To request an account activation, please contact Rob Hyde (AV Manager) or Sacha Goodwin (AV Operations Manager).

You can still use the older version of Turningpoint on Office PCs to create presntations; although it may be better to get your IT Supporter to roll the new version out to your office PC.
The new Version is already on the GTA PCs.

Instructions of how to set up are on the AV Wiki:



GTA Rolling Refurbishment - Update 9 August 2016


📥  Design Build Advise, Equipment, Spaces, Systems

We've been for a tour of the new facilities, and they're all progressing very well.
We hope to have them ready to go again in the next 10 days or so.

Some rooms are really unrecognisable from before!

4E3.19 - 9 August

4E3.19 - 9 August

4E3.10 - full delivery

4E3.10 - full delivery



4E2.56 - Dual screen

4E2.56 - Dual screen

3WN2.1 - flooring finished

3WN2.1 - flooring finished

Obviously there is more to come in the near future!


GTA Refurbishment - Update 22 July 2016

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📥  Design Build Advise, Spaces

Work is gathering pace this week, with many of the teaching spaces starting to come back together.

4W and 6W have had a technology change, and will be released back into general usage shortly.

5W 2.1 and 2.3 have been repainted, pending some new AV equipment in the next week or two.

The progress on the other rooms is below!

3WN 2.1 on 22 July - starting to look like a theatre again.

3WN 2.1 on 22 July - starting to look like a theatre again.


3WN3.8 - please note the new windows.

3WN3.8 - please note the new windows.


4E3.10 - New flooring & Paintwork

4E3.10 - New flooring & Paintwork








1E3.9 PC Lab

1E3.9 PC Lab







SCHOMS Conference - Day 3

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📥  News

The final day of the Conference is usually shorter, with an early afternoon finish, to allow delegates to get back to their institutions.

The first session  of the day was given by the UK InfoComm Rep - Chris Lavelle.

This was a speedy update of what the corporate membership (via SCHOMS) gives to member institutions; and how we can use it for InfoComm specific training sessions.

Certianly all of our staff here at Bath make use of this session, and we encourage everyone to take on the full CTS qualification they offer us through it.

The second session was given by Terry Coe, from the University of Western Australia, who was representing the SCHOMS sister organisation the AETM. He came to give an update of the AETM activities, and to show us how they run projects in Australia.

We had a great run through of how complex a teaching lab build can be when you have corporate and departmental involvement.

Terry Coe - UWA

Terry Coe - UWA

The large session of that morning had an analysis of Lecture capture systems, and the use of Canvas.


There were lots of discussions in the sessions, and a report will be coming out in the near future - more to follow.

The final session of the Conference was given to Mark Burden from Swansea University, who took us through a fascinating insight into the provision of conferencing - in particular Skype for Business, Lync, and Pexip.

This was an interesting look at how conferencing is becoming more sought after; but the degree to which there is is interoperability between the systems is rising in importance. That and the ease of use for the users to be able to get meetings organised quickly.


There are lots of developments made recently, and one we watch with interest here at Bath - indeed we have plans in place for the future.
There is more information to come in the new future.

After closing remarks from the Chair - Paul Wood from Bangor University; we were treated to a quick video of the next host.

For next year I hand the baton over to Mark Warren at Keele University - and I also help him with organising the process for the next time!

The experience of hosting the conference was very rewarding and very tiring.

We recommend attendance whole-heartedly.


SCHOMS Conference - Day 2

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📥  Equipment, Live Event, Technology

After completing a very satisfying Day 1, the conference moved into the Exhibition and Systems Day of the conference.

Outside of BETT, the conference manufacturer and supplier exhibition was the largest in HE this year - which is some achievement. Indeed, it's given us food for thought for future events.

The first presentation of the day came from Professor Nigel John at the University of Chester, and focussed on the provision of a virtual training environment for medical procedures. This was a fascinating run through how well things have developed in 20 years. Even down to the newest form of student app for training on specific procedures. The assessment seems to show that it is of benefit to the students.
Some of Nigel's work is here:

After this first session, the Exhibition proper started:


If you'd like a rather good review of events - Lis from St. Mary's University has done it....

There were two parallel sessions later in the morning, just before lunch

  1. Marc Poffley from Crestron presenting EDID -
  2. Sarah Davies from JISC presenting Digital Capabilities.

We attended the session by Sarah.

It covered the production of a new service, and the process of working with stakeholders and sector bodies, to provide clear guidance over what digital skills are required - and equip leaders and staff with the tools and resources they need to improve digital capability at a local or institutional level.

It looks like a very robust way to approach developing skills.


In the afternoon, there were two other parallel sessions:

  1. Matthew Green and Jonathan Rhodes from University of Wolverhampton presenting Teaching Science.
  2. Rob Hyde and Sarah Turpin from University of Bath presenting the LITEbox project.

Obviously I was presenting the second session!


We covered the whole LITEbox development, and collected feedback from the audience about how other universities conduct this process. It's being used going forward to inform the direction of our project!

The final session of the day was a duble-header; the SCHOMS bursary scheme, and the Benchmarking Exercise.

The SCHOMS bursary scheme is designed to assist members to take a project on that will be of benefit to the community. This year's beneficiary was Caroline Pepper at Loughborough who used the funding to conduct a benchmarking with several other universities - including us at Bath, to examine the running of AV services.

The results have provided an interesting insight into the operation and differences across the sector.

More information is here:

After a final visit to the Exhibition, we then broke for the SCHOMS Conference Dinner, which this year was held in the Pump House at the Roman Baths:

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brett

Photo courtesy of Adrian Brett


I think we can agree.... It was a brilliant evening, and will be quite hard to follow!


GTA Refurbishment - Summer Update #1

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📥  Design Build Advise, Spaces

We thought we'd let you have an insight into the work that is going on behind the scenes in some of the GTA spaces over this summer's build project.

As you can see, we're not just updating the technology (which we are doing), but we're preparing the rooms for a full set of infrastructure for the future years. This includes the furniture, the infrastructure cabling, wiring, lights (in some places) and teaching stations.

We're all very busy!

1E2.4 - Stripped Out

1E2.4 - Stripped Out

1E3.6 waiting for attention

1E3.6 waiting for attention

This was a PC Lab!

This was a PC Lab!

3WN2.1 - Empty

3WN2.1 - Empty


3WN2.1 Flooring change


3WN3.7 Stripped to the floor


3WN3.7 - The boards are being replaced with something new


New windows for 3WN3.8


4E3.10 Asbestos removal from Windows and Wall


GTA Refurbishment


📥  Design Build Advise, Spaces

The GTA refurbishment is going along at quite a pace.

The bulk of the work so far has been spent in dealing with the asbestos works in 1E, 2E and 4E.

Many of the other rooms are also starting to be redecorated.





The full list of what we're doing is here:

Summer Upgrades

Please contact us if you'd like to know any more.



SCHOMS Conference - Preliminary and Day 1

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📥  Technology

This week we were the host venue for the annual SCHOMS conference.

SCHOMS is the professional association for the support services for education technology. The annual conference provides an opportunity for those rare and likeminded Heads and senior staff to meet and discuss any and everything related to providing technology in support of teaching.

The events this year started with an evening social gathering on the Monday night for those travelling from some distance. It allowed for introductions and buddying up of the new with the old members. We were lucky to have several new members attend, including from the Universities of Malta and from Western Australia. The evening coincided with the England - Iceland football international; which unfortunately for some led to a more sombre evening!

It was a delight to welcome everyone to the University in Bath.

The conference proper started on the Tuesday morning, with a welcome from the current Chair, Paul Wood, from the University of Bangor in North Wales.

The opening address was given by the University of Bath's Vice Principal, Steve Egan. It held an empassioned thought on the processes in the recent Brexit vote, and the effects it may have for Universities, and a guided tour through what the University of Bath is, and the different way that we operate - our uniqueness. It was a great opening to conference.


It was great to see that our LITEbox project got a great mention and support.
All told there were 67 delegates from all across the UK, and guests from across the globe.

The next session held the audience attention well - Shane Cryer from Ecophon presented a session on the slightly dry topic of room acoustics.
The session included a sort of 'hearing test' for the delegates to see if they could hear specific frequency tones. Sufficed to say that not everyone in the audience could! However, there were some more startling effects to be measured through some recent research:


There were some stark advice that I could take from the sessions:

BB93 (Building Bulletin - from the Dept for Education) suggests that the target reverberation rating should be a maximum of 0.8. Where there are students with qualifications under Equality Act, then we should aim for under 0.4.
In practice, it would seem that most teaching rooms really will struggle to comply with these measurements. The good news is that we already have options to measure this effect in rooms - and we will go through a process this year of measuring the performance of our rooms.

The next session of the morning was the formal launch of the SCHOMS / UCISA / AUDE joint report entitled 'Learning Space Toolkit'. Many of us in the sector have had some input into this report. It will give the reader a good start on how to look at their learning spaces, and then start to manage them going into the future.
It's by no means the right way to do it, and it will not suit some, but it is a good foundation to work with.

After the business of the AGM, the day moved on to quick look at some facilities on campus.

Through the course of the tour, we were treated to a guided look at the facilities by members of the AV Unit. In University Hall, there was also a live demostration of a great product developed by Robin Sheilds, from the School of Management, called
It allows the presenter to:

  • Interact with the audience through polls and discussion questions
  • Enables the user to annotate slides and move objects on the slide using a smartphone or tablet whilst the user is presenting

It can be considered as a presenter's way of trying to do presentations, but improving the interactivity as the session develops....More information is available here:

We would encourage everyone to look at the great solution - it's free!

After lunch, the afternoon session was provided by us at Bath.

It started off with Amanda Wylie - Staff Development Manager at the University - with a session about understanding how the support staff will relate to the users of the service.

We did this by looking at the 4 colour energies of personalities, and how you can use them to keep someone's attention. It was a very useful session! It's surprising how many people you can fit into these categories.

Colour Energies

As part of this session, some of the delegates were asked to make the shape of a rabbit whilst blindfolded and under time pressure. The results were 'interesting'.


However it was a thought-provoking session about how you deal with personal situations.

The final session of the day was provided by Dr. John Troyer, from the University's Faculty of Health.
For a group of people, John has an interesting look on 'What is Technology?'.Given a background in University support services himself, the ideas are slightly left-field. It was a timely remider that technology may become ubiquitous and we might not think about them as technology any more. Devices such as pens, compound lenses in glasses and even books - not just even electronic ones.

However, the finest thought for us to really consider is not the use of technology, but the lifespan of technology. How we plan for the lifespan of a piece of technology, from selection to eventual obsolescence is more important than anything else. Does the statement of 'forever' really mean forever for data, or the use of files, or the lifespan of the physical equipment? This could lead to the perpetuation of fads in education - whereas we might like to think about the systemic entirety rather than popularity of use.